Someone Cares Series
Information brochure No. 11
By What Standard
Will We Be Judged?
In our last lesson we learned that "we must all appear
before the judgment seat of Christ." In this lesson we will
discover the standard by which we are to be judged.
1. Can we earn salvation?
"For by grace are ye saved through faith; and that
not of yourselves: it is the gift of God: Not of works, lest any
man should boast. For we are his workmanship, created in Christ
Jesus unto good works, which God hath before ordained that we
should walk in them" (Ephesians 2:8-10).
Faith is the condition upon which God has seen fit to promise
pardon to sinners; not that there is any virtue in faith whereby
salvation is merited, but because faith can lay hold of the
merits of Christ, the remedy provided for sin. Faith can present
Christ's perfect obedience instead of the sinner's transgression
and defection. When the sinner believes that Christ is his
personal Saviour, then according to His unfailing promises, God
pardons his sin and justifies him freely. Human beings are in
continual danger of boasting, of exalting self. Thus they reveal
their weakness. The great change that is seen in the life of the
sinner after his conversion is not brought about through any
human goodness; therefore, all human boasting is entirely out of
2. What experience must we have to receive this free
"Jesus answered and said unto him, Verily, verily, I
say unto thee, Except a man be born again, he cannot see the
kingdom of God" (John 3:3).
It is only through the life from God that life is begotten in
the hearts of men. The Saviour said, "except a man be born
from above," unless he shall receive a new heart, new
desires, purposes and motives, leading to a new life, "he
cannot see the kingdom of God." There must be a power
working from within, a new life from above, before men can be
changed from sin to holiness. That power is Christ. His grace
alone can quicken the lifeless faculties of the soul, and attract
it to God, to holiness.
3. To be born again means to receive the gift of
Jesus' divine nature. In the Scriptures, this nature is variously
called life, power, seed or spirit. How can we receive this new
"According as his divine power hath given unto us all
things that pertain unto life and godliness, through the
knowledge of him that hath called us to glory and virtue: Whereby
are given unto us exceeding great and precious promises: that by
these ye might be partakers of the divine nature, having escaped
the corruption that is in the world through lust" (2 Peter
Contemplating Christ and His righteousness leaves no room for
self righteousness or the glorifying of self. In the life of the
Christian there is no standstill. There is continual advancement
in every stage of the knowledge of Christ. God is behind all His
promises, and they are estimated by the truth of the one who
makes them. Many men make promises only to break them, to mock
the heart that trusted in them. We must realize that through
belief in Him it is our privilege to be partakers of the divine
nature, and so escape the corruption that is in the world through
lust. As we partake of the divine nature, hereditary and
cultivated tendencies to wrong are cut away from the character.
4. Unless we are "eating" the Word of God,
through Bible study and prayer, can we have Jesus' life (or
nature) abiding in us?
"Then Jesus said unto them, Verily, verily, I say
unto you, Except ye eat the flesh of the Son of man, and drink
his blood, ye have no life in you. ... It is the spirit that
quickeneth; the flesh profiteth nothing: the words that I speak
unto you, they are spirit, and they are life" (John 6:53,
Our bodies are built up from what we eat and drink. And as in
the natural, so in the spiritual economy; it is that which our
minds dwell upon which sustains the spiritual nature. Spiritual
life must be sustained by communion with Christ through His Word.
The mind must dwell upon it and the heart must be filled with it.
The Word of God, laid up in the heart and sacredly cherished and
obeyed through the power of the grace of Christ, can make man
right and keep him right. Unless the truth of God controls the
heart, the conscience will be warped.
5. When we are born again, what must happen to the
sinful habits in our life?
"Therefore we are buried with him by baptism into
death: that like as Christ was raised up from the dead by the
glory of the Father, even so we also should walk in newness of
life. For if we have been planted together in the likeness of his
death, we shall be also in the likeness of his resurrection:
Knowing this, that our old man is crucified with him, that the
body of sin might be destroyed, that henceforth we should not
serve sin" (Romans 6:4-6).
With faith and humility they had accepted the Lamb of God that
has taken away the sins of the world. Through the blood of Jesus
they had remission of sins that were past. These souls brought
forth fruit meet for repentance. They believed and were baptized
and rose to walk in newness of life—new creatures in Christ
Jesus—not to fashion themselves according to former lusts,
but by the faith of the Son of God to follow in His steps, to
reflect His character and to purify themselves even as He is
pure. The things they once hated they now loved and the things
they once loved, they hated. The proud and self assertive became
meek and lowly of heart. The vain and supercilious became serious
and unobtrusive. The profane became reverent, the drunken sober
and the profligate pure.
6. What is sin?
"Whosoever committeth sin transgresseth also the law:
for sin is the transgression of the law" (1 John 3:4).
Without the law there can be no transgression. The
transgression of God's law in a single instance, in the smallest
particular, is sin. He cannot do away with its smallest item in
order to meet and pardon sin. Christ was obedient to every
requirement of the Law. By His perfect obedience He has made it
possible for every human being to obey God's Commandments. Let
none deceive themselves with the belief that they can become holy
while willfully violating one of God's requirements. The
commission of a known sin silences the witnessing voice of the
Spirit and separates the soul from God.
7. How will God know that we have been born again? By
what standard will He judge us on the day of judgment?
"For whosoever shall keep the whole law, and yet
offend in one point, he is guilty of all. For he that said, Do
not commit adultery, said also, Do not kill. Now if thou commit
no adultery, yet if thou kill, thou art become a transgressor of
the law. So speak ye, and so do, as they that shall be judged by
the law of liberty" (James 2:10-12).
"This do and thou shalt live," Jesus said. He
presented the Law as a divine unity and in this lesson taught
that it is not possible to keep one precept and break another,
for the same principle runs through them all. Man's destiny will
be determined by his obedience to the whole law. Supreme love to
God and impartial love to man are the principles to be wrought
out in the life.
8. Since we were born in sin, and love sin, how can we
have the new-birth experience of victory over sin?
"For the law of the Spirit of life in Christ Jesus
hath made me free from the law of sin and death. For what the law
could not do, in that it was weak through the flesh, God sending
his own Son in the likeness of sinful flesh, and for sin,
condemned sin in the flesh: That the righteousness of the law
might be fulfilled in us, who walk not after the flesh, but after
the Spirit. For they that are after the flesh do mind the things
of the flesh; but they that are after the Spirit the things of
the Spirit. For to be carnally minded is death; but to be
spiritually minded is life and peace. ... For if ye live after
the flesh, ye shall die: but if ye through the Spirit do mortify
the deeds of the body, ye shall live" (Romans 8:2-6, 13).
So long as we surrender the will to God, and trust in His
strength and wisdom, we will be guided in save paths to fulfill
our appointed part in His great plan. In the new birth the heart
is brought into harmony with God as it is brought into accord
with His law. When this mighty change has taken place in the
sinner he has passed from death unto life, from sin unto
holiness, from transgression and rebellion to obedience and
loyalty. The old life of alienation from God has ended, the new
life of reconciliation, faith and love has begun. Then the
righteousness of the law will be fulfilled in us.
9. How do we know that Jesus had no advantage over us
so that we too can live victoriously over sin "just as"
Jesus did (1 John 3:3)?
"For we have not an high priest which cannot be
touched with the feeling of our infirmities; but was in all
points tempted like as we are, yet without sin. Let us therefore
come boldly unto the throne of grace, that we may obtain mercy,
and find grace to help in time of need" (Hebrews 4:15, 16).
The throne of grace represents the kingdom of grace, for the
existence of a throne implies the existence of a kingdom. In many
of His parables Christ uses the expression "the kingdom of
heaven" to designate the work of divine grace upon the
hearts of men. The kingdom of grace was instituted immediately
after the fall of man, when a plan was devised for the redemption
of the guilty race. It then existed in the purpose and by the
promise of God, and through faith men could become its subjects.
The Son of God has fulfilled His pledge and has passed into
the heavens to take upon Himself the government of the heavenly
host. He fulfilled one phase of His priesthood by dying on the
cross for the fallen race. He is not fulfilling another phase by
pleading before the Father the case of the repenting, believing
sinner, presenting to God the offerings of His people. Having
taken human nature, and in this nature having overcome the
temptation of the enemy, and having divine perfection, to Him has
been committed the judgment of the world. The case (or record) of
each one will be brought in review before Him. Those who claim
that it was not possible for Christ to sin cannot believe that He
really took upon Himself human nature. Was not Christ actually
tempted, not only by Satan in the wilderness but all through His
life, from childhood to manhood? in all points He was tempted as
we are, and because He successfully resisted temptation under
every form He gave man the perfect example.
As an earthly parent encourages his child to come to him at
all times, so the Lord encourages us to lay before Him our wants
and perplexities, our gratitude and love. Every promise is sure.
Jesus is our Surety and Mediator and He has placed at our command
every resource that we may have a perfect character.
10. How could Jesus have been "tempted as we
"For both he that sanctifieth and they who are
sanctified are all of one: for which cause he is not ashamed to
call them brethren, ... Forasmuch then as the children are
partakers of flesh and blood, he also himself likewise took part
of the same; that through death he might destroy him that had the
power of death, that is, the devil; And deliver them who through
fear of death were all their lifetime subject to bondage. For
verily he took not on him the nature of angels; but he took on
him the seed of Abraham. Wherefore in all things it behoved him
to be made like unto his brethren, that he might be a merciful
and faithful high priest in things pertaining to God, to make
reconciliation for the sins of the people. For in that he himself
hath suffered being tempted, he is able to succour them that are
tempted" (Hebrews 2:11, 14-18).
God Himself must be revealed to humanity. He employed the
human faculties, for only by adopting these could He be
comprehended by humanity. He lived out the character of God
through the human body which God had prepared for Him. He blessed
the world by living out in human flesh the life of God. He could
not come in the form of an angel, for unless He met man as man
and testified by His connection with God that divine power was
not given to Him in a different way to what it will be given to
us, He could not be a perfect example for us. He was tempted in
all points like as we are, yet without sin. In His humanity He
understood all the temptations that will come to man. Jesus
became a man that He might mediate between man and God. As Christ
overcame every temptation which Satan brought against Him, so man
is to overcome. Through toil through patient trust and faith in
Jesus Christ, through faithful continuance in well doing, he may
rise to spiritual victory. Jesus exercised no powers that men may
not have through faith in Him. His perfect humanity is that which
all His followers may possess. In Christ, God has provided means
for subduing every sinful trait, and resisting every temptation
11. When Jesus gives us a new beginning (new birth) by
imparting to us His Spirit (or nature), what does He write on our
"For this is the covenant that I will make with the
house of Israel after those days, saith the Lord; I will put my
laws into their mind, and write them in their hearts: and I will
be to them a God, and they shall be to me a people:"
The light shining from the cross reveals the love of God. His
love is drawing us to Himself, If we do not resist this drawing
we shall be led to the foot of the cross in repentance for the
sins that have crucified the Saviour. Then the Spirit of God
through faith produces a new life in the soul. The thoughts and
desires are brought into obedience to the will of Christ. The
heart and mind are created anew in the image of Him who works in
us to subdue all things to Himself. Then the Law of God is
written in the mind and heart and we can say with Christ, "I
delight to do Thy will O my God." (Psalms 40:8).
12 What motive should prompt us to keep God's law?
"If ye love me, keep my commandments" (John
We are not to serve God as though we were not human, but we
are to serve Him in the nature we have that has been redeemed by
the Son of God; through the righteousness of Christ we shall
stand before God pardoned and as though we had never sinned. We
will never gain strength in considering what we might do if we
were angels. We are to turn in faith to Jesus Christ and show our
love to God through obedience to His commands.
13. Are God's commandments burdensome to those who are
truly born again?
"For this is the love of God, that we keep his
commandments: and his commandments are not grievous. For
whatsoever is born of God overcometh the world: and this is the
victory that overcometh the world, even our faith" (1 John
If our hearts are renewed in the likeness of God, if the
divine love is implanted in the soul, the law of God will be
carried out in the life. When the principle of love is implanted
in the heart, when man is renewed after the image of Him that
created him, the new covenant promise is fulfilled; "I will
put My laws into their hearts and in their minds will I write
them" (Hebrews 10:16). And if the Law is written in the
heart, will it not shape the life? Obedience, the service and
allegiance of love, is the true sign of discipleship.
A spiritual relation between Christ and the soul can be
established only through the exercise of personal faith.
"Without faith it is impossible to please Him" (Hebrews
11:6). It is faith that connects us with the power of heaven and
brings us strength for coping with the powers of darkness.
"This is the victory that overcometh the world, even our
14. Why will many who think they are born again be
disappointed on the day of judgment?
"Not every one that saith unto me, Lord, Lord, shall
enter into the kingdom of heaven; but he that doeth the will of
my Father which is in heaven. Many will say to me in that day,
Lord, Lord, have we not prophesied in thy name? and in thy name
have cast out devils? and in thy name done many wonderful works?
And then will I profess unto them, I never knew you: depart from
me, ye that work iniquity" (Matthew 7:21-23).
The people here described, who make these pretentious claims,
apparently weaving Jesus into all their doings, fitly represent
those who claim modern sanctification but who are at war with the
Law of God. Christ calls them workers of iniquity because they
are deceivers, having on the garments of righteousness to hide
the deformity of their characters, the inward wickedness of their
unholy hearts. Satan has come down in these last days to work
with all deceivableness of unrighteousness in them that perish.
He works miracles in the sight of men, claiming that he is indeed
Christ himself. Those who claim to have the great power of God
can only be discerned by the great detector, the Law of God. The
sheep's clothing seems so real, so genuine, that the wolf cannot
be discerned. Only as we go to God's great moral standard can we
find that they are transgressors of the Law of God.
15. How does the Bible summarize the answer to our
question, "By what standard will we be judged on the day of
"Let us hear the conclusion of the whole matter: Fear
God, and keep his commandments: for this is the whole duty of
man. For God shall bring every work into judgment, with every
secret thing, whether it be good, or whether it be evil"
(Ecclesiastes 12:13, 14).
The Lord requires perfection from His redeemed family. He
calls for perfection in character building. Fathers and mother
especially need to understand the best methods of training
children, that they may co-operate with God. Men and women,
children and youth are measured in the scales of heaven in
accordance with that which they reveal in their home life. A
Christian in the home is a Christian everywhere.
The statement is often heard that god is not particular
whether or not we give diligent heed to His Word, whether or not
we obey all the Commandments of His holy Law, but the record of
His dealing with Achan should be a warning to us, "He sill
in no wise clear the guilty."16. Who will be admitted into
heaven?"Blessed are they that do his commandments, that they
may have right to the tree of life, and may enter in through the
gates into the city" (Revelation 22:14).
Transgression of God's requirements excluded Adam from the
garden of Eden. A flaming sword was placed around the tree of
life lest man should put forth his hand and partake of it,
immortalizing sin. Obedience to all the Commandments of God as
the condition of eating of the tree of life. Adam fell by
disobedience, forfeiting by sin all right to use either the life
giving fruit of the tree in the midst of the garden, or its
leaves which were for the healing of the nations. Obedience
through Jesus Christ gives a man perfection of character and a
right to that tree of life. The conditions f again partaking of
the fruit of the tree are plainly stated in the testimony of
Jesus Christ to John. If people have knowingly trampled upon and
despised His Law on earth, they will not be taken to heaven to do
the same work there. There is no change of character when Christ
comes. The character building is to go on during the hours of
probation. Day by day our actions are registered in the books of
Our salvation cost Jesus His life, but He offers salvation to
us free if we will but surrender our sinful natures to Him who
has promised to "take away our sins" (1 John 3:5) and
to write His law on our hearts. Thus it is that we will be judged
according to God's law, for our works show whether we have been
born again (1 John 2:29). "Let no one deceive you" on
this point (1 John 3:6, 7)! The new birth involves a total,
growing change of character, habits, and thinking (2 Corinthians
5:17). Do you want Jesus to give you this new-birth experience,